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Inspiring Academics: Learning with the World's Great University Teachers
Campus map. Term dates Find out about how the academic year is structured. Term dates. They set goals for themselves for their own continued professional development. In Teaching with Digital Technologies, interns implement a range of strategies to develop their online professional learning network. Some examples include connecting with other K educators via social networking and blogging resources and developing their own professional podcasts. In addition, interns in their student teaching semester are encouraged to participate in the 4T Virtual Conference with other practicing teachers and administrators.
In Teaching Children with Exceptionalities in Inclusive Classrooms, interns learn about the importance of collaborating with special educators and they practice concrete ways to do this. Through experiences like these, interns develop strategies for continually improving their own instructional competence. In order to practice competently and thus ethically, teachers need to develop and continually build on professional knowledge and a repertoire of professionally-justified instructional practices.
They choose instructional moves with deliberate reference to professional knowledge, including but not limited to research, and to an understanding of what will help students attain stated goals. They pay close attention to student progress and modify instruction accordingly.
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Interns work on strategies to ensure equitable access to learning in one's own classroom across the program. For example, in Teaching in a Multicultural Society 1, focused on social foundations and culturally responsive pedagogy, interns reflect on a case of "Joshua" and consider why he would be viewed as a trouble-maker in one setting i.
In the Managing to Teach sequence, interns work on giving clear directions, with an emphasis on learning to question their assumptions about what students will know or not know. In this sequence they also work on learning the language that teachers use to effectively remind students of the behaviors needed to be fully involved in learning, including the language of redirection and reinforcement, as well as different strategies for calling on children and how one makes choices about different techniques. Similarly, in Teaching with Digital Technologies, interns work on using technologies to allow students to participate anonymously while still receiving constructive feedback.
Throughout the program, interns learn to ensure equitable access to different subject matters. In Teaching with Curriculum Materials, interns learn to plan lessons using published curriculum materials in science, math, and social studies. Interns develop a professional disposition toward curriculum materials and professional skills with regard to selecting, evaluating, and modifying materials in ways that ensure that every student achieves standards-based learning goals.
In their methods classes, interns continue this work on equitable access. In both literacy methods classes, interns learn strategies for individualizing reading and writing instruction based upon observations and assessments.
In social studies methods, interns learn how one reads historical sources; they develop and rehearse a historical literacy lesson. This work entails adapting primary sources so they are appropriate for students' reading level and to provide scaffolding to support students' reading and analysis. In science methods and mathematics methods, interns learn and practice strategies for being explicit about what might be invisible about the content or about connections between representations of the content, being explicit about the use of academic language, modeling the use of academic language of the discipline, and engaging in the practices of the discipline e.
Through experiences like these, interns develop concrete strategies to help them ensure all learners have equitable access to learning in their classrooms. To ensure equitable access to learning, teachers deliberately set high standards for all students. Teachers who ensure equitable access to learning expect and enable high-level academic work by setting and elaborating ambitious goals for students, investing students and other stakeholders in those goals, and deliberately scaffolding and sensitively supporting students' learning.
They help students learn how to succeed in school and explicitly teach them different ways of learning and being such that they can achieve success not only in school but in other environments that may be unfamiliar.
School of Education - University of Michigan
In order to ensure equitable access to learning, teachers must demonstrate awareness of how students' personal and cultural backgrounds interact with instructional choices and modify practice accordingly. They must attend to and design for diversity in students' experiences in ways that enable student success. This includes using examples, representations, and contexts sensitively and choosing topics for discussion with care. It also includes engaging students' participation in classroom conversation and activities equitably and managing external constraints on children's learning.
To learn about and demonstrate awareness of and appreciation for cultural differences and social diversity, particularly as they are present in one's classroom, and to draw on diversity as a resource in instruction.
University College London
In the interns' first literacy class, they engage in interactive read-alouds that are designed to engage children in considering a critical concept from a text. The texts are chosen to be multicultural texts in which authors deliberately share a counter-narrative. For example, one text provides a fictional account of the Columbus narrative told from the perspective of a Taino Indian boy. An experience like this helps interns begin to appreciate difference and diversity and to develop strategies for helping students to develop a broader worldview.
In mathematics methods, interns learn that algorithms that have been traditionally taught and used in the US are not always the algorithms used outside of the US. Interns explore algorithms that are standard and non-standard in the US, learn about a few algorithms that are non-standard in the US but standard elsewhere, and begin to develop a disposition to explore whether alternative algorithms consistently work and why.
As part of a commitment to the learning of all children, teachers must pay attention to and show appreciation for diversity among their pupils.
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By "diversity", we mean differences related to race, gender, sexuality, religion, and disability status, among other aspects of human diversity. Teachers are ethically obligated to serve the learning needs of all children, and to do this they must recognize, understand, and demonstrate an appreciation for the perspectives, cultural backgrounds, values and beliefs, world views, and different kinds of motivation that students bring to school.
If teachers cannot recognize and demonstrate a basic understanding of the affordances and importance of these kinds of difference, they may not be able to meet the needs of all of their pupils, and they may cause pupils significant harm. Where possible, teachers use the different kinds of personal and cultural knowledge and experience that their students bring to the classroom as an instructional resource. Teachers should understand enough about their students' cultural, social, and personal backgrounds to recognize when local or world events are likely to be particularly significant to individual students, to protect students from taunting, bullying or other kinds of harm related to difference, and to draw on students' knowledge and experience as a resource in explicating concepts and ideas for other pupils.
They should also be cognizant of when particular topics, texts, or assignments are likely to make students uncomfortable for reasons of personal or cultural background. To do this, teachers need to seek relevant information and cross-cultural experience whenever they can.
They face a particular imperative to learn about the community in which they are teaching, and to explore the cultural and social resources of that community for instruction. It is important to note that the understanding and appreciation to which we refer are professional and not necessarily personal. They enable teachers to design and execute instruction that has a high probability of meeting the needs of individual students, but do not necessarily connote a personal embrace of particular practices, religious or moral beliefs, or worldviews.
There may be cases in which teachers do not share or are even opposed to the moral codes, religious convictions, beliefs, or worldviews of their students, such as when a teacher who believes that homosexuality is wrong encounters a gay pupil. In such cases, it remains the teacher's responsibility to welcome and protect the student and his or her right to open expression and access to learning, and to refer him or her to appropriate resources or personnel when necessary.
In short, there is a difference between a teacher's own closely-held personal beliefs and the manifestation of professional acceptance of diversity in the classroom. Teachers also need to become self-aware of their own culture, habits, and ways of being, and the ways in which those factors may affect how others perceive or respond to them, and to learn to adjust those sensitively in tune with the context in which they work.
This includes understanding privilege including not just economic privilege, but racial privilege, gender privilege, etc. Being a "good person" is not enough to ensure ethical teaching practice. Teachers incur a special obligation to understand and act on instances in which their own or others' ignorance or prejudice can interfere with the learning of all pupils, and to do this means to build a set of professional knowledge and skills that extends beyond those naturally developed by "good" people. Several tensions attend the ethical obligation to understand, appreciate, and use diversity.
One has to do with recognizing and using diversity in one's own classroom versus attending to diversity that is not present in one's classroom Teachers need to bring in perspectives and ideas that are not represented in their own classrooms, balancing attention to unfamiliar kinds of diversity with attention to the ideas and voices that are already present.
Another dilemma concerns the manifestation of ideas and viewpoints that are widely condemned in the United States. Teachers must strive to protect students and their freedom of speech while still maintaining a safe, respectful learning environment. Similarly, teachers are obligated to develop their ability to foster open dialogue about uncomfortable issues in their classroom, in part as a means of protecting and furthering the learning of all of their students.
To demonstrate through concrete actions an awareness of the capacity of every individual to learn.